I wake up early every morning, meditate, make coffee, write a bit and usually check out a few sites online.Besides the Interdependence Project One City blog, which I humbly submit manages to have a more relevant, lively, and consistent conversation about Buddhist technique in 21st century lifestyle than anyone else out there – I’ve found that there are a handful of blogs and websites I always come back to.The Lifestream is a feed of all his writing on all the subjects he writes so eloquently about. Shambhala Sunspace When Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche brought his version of Buddhism to the West forty years ago, he framed them as the Shambhala teachings to make them relevant to a young American audience.As Shambhala Sun magazine (the physical version) continues to serve a largely older population made up of the people who gave Buddhism its foundation in Western Society, its blog Shambhala Sunspace is finding its sea legs as it engages today’s younger audience.” I’ve never asked Jonatahan if he’s Buddhist or if he practices meditation, but I do know this: he tests every idea that he comes up with in the lab of his own life, rejects what doesn’t work, keeps what does, then writes about it in a way that makes me feel like I am up at 2AM having an amazing conversation with an old friend. Personally I’d love to see a shirtless Celebrity Buddhist Smackdown between Ethan Nichtern and Waylon Lewis, but I should proabably keep my sordid fantasies to myself.Editor Rod Meade Sperry is doing a fantastic job, and it wouldn’t surprise me if his work with Sunspace becomes an important part of the emerging conversation about Buddhism in modern life. Illuminated Mind Jonathan Mead’s website about livelihood, creativity, and finding your authentic voice could easily be a pastiche of cheesy self-development crap.Instead, he’s managed to make lessons learned on his own deeply felt (and ongoing) journey to self-actualization relevant to anyone who’s ever wondered “who the F am I anyways? Elephant Journal If the Interdependence Project is the New Yorky/crunchy/environmentalist/Kumbaya/neurotic love child of Martin Luther King Jr, Allen Ginsberg and Woody Harrelson, then Elephant Journal is our easy-breezy/Bouldery-y/athletic intellectual/pine-scented/ski-pass toting/yoga-doing cousin.
So in no particular order, here are the 10 of the best websites to check out when exploring your own practice (or just if you’re just curious about Buddhism). How to Save the World Dave Pollard is an extraordinary thinker who has been writing for years about the intersection of environment, intentional community, and personal choices and “a better understanding of how the world really works”.I follow most of these by subscribing with the always free Google Reader; before that i just had a little folder called “Daily Reading” in my Firefox toolbar. There is no other writer who so consistently challenges the limits of my understanding and causes me to return again and again to their ideas.Dave nearly always leads to me to an “ah-hah” moment, but sometimes it takes re-reading or marinating his essays to get it. Buddhanet Hands down the most absurdly well-stocked library of information about Buddhism online, Buddhanet has everything from online meditation teachings, to an evolving Buddhist e Library, a massive director of Sanghas and Buddhist organizations worldwide, mp3’s of chanting, teachings and Buddhist songs – all donation supported since 1995.This is one of the first places I saw Buddhism being explored online, and it is constantly being updated. The Dalai Lama’s Personal Wesbite His Holiness’ website includes audio teachings in many languages (check out Webcasts) as well as news updates and a photo gallery that makes me wonder why he’s never done a music video. Buddhist Geeks While The Interdependence Project may have the best podcasts of contemporary Buddhist classes available online, Buddhist Geeks is the leader in awesome interviews with Buddhist teachers, scholars and thinkers, all of which are meant to inspire direct action rather than just mere “flapping their gums”.
Chief geek Vince Horn did a great guest post here at the IDP blog last week that drew over 170 comments. Tricycle While Buddhist Geeks and the Interdependence Project rigorously strive to make teachings relevant to 21st century internet dwellers, Tricycle tends to a bit more navel-gazing, critical analysis and review.Always thoughtful, always scented by just a whiff of Nag Champa, Tricycle’s online magazine and their blog are where I go when I need a more philosophical moment. Kevin Kelly’s Lifestream Back in the day, Wired Magazine was a mind-bending, thought-provoking hotbed of thinking about how people, technology, and the physical environment intersected.